Shannon Williams

Better Together?

| by Shannon Williams

In planning for a capital campaign, the question often comes up—should we combine our annual, capital, and planned giving efforts into one comprehensive campaign, counting all three efforts into one total goal? There is not a one-size-fits-all answer to this question, but there are fac…

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The Value of a Regular Organizational Check-Up

| by Shannon Williams

Regular check-ups are part of life. Whether it’s your teeth, your eyes, your car inspection, or your HVAC unit, we are conditioned to schedule annual exams and execute regular maintenance. So why is the thought of an organizational assessment so terrifying? For many leaders of for-pro…

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Do the Best You Can With What You Got

| by Shannon Williams

Nearly 20 years ago I met Judy Bright for lunch at Darryl’s on Hillsborough Street. A mutual friend suggested that we connect. Other than the fact that she worked at the YMCA, I knew nothing about her.  I was nine months into my new vocation as a mom and I was unsure where …

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The Day After

| by Shannon Williams

As we say in the South, it’s fall, y’all. Time for tailgates, pumpkin patches, and hay rides. And in the non-profit sector, it’s time for giving days.  Giving Tuesday is the most well know of course, but higher education and independent schools also ha…

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Dog Days and Donors

| by Shannon Williams

Oil and vinegar. Pancakes and ketchup. Duke and Carolina fans.  Some things just don’t go together.  I have learned that Capital Campaigns and Summer belong on that list. Summer in general and July, in particular, is a terrible month for fundraising. While it…

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When a Conversation Takes a Serious Turn

| by Shannon Williams

Last week I had the opportunity to meet Katherine Ngaruiya (Kat). We had a video call scheduled, but technology was not my friend, so it turned into a phone call. Here we were two professionals sharing our career journeys and present engagements—simply getting to know one another. Som…

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A Year Later . . .

| by Shannon Williams

One week from today, Jeff and I will pick up our oldest son from his first year at college.  Turns out, you were right.  He has had a great year and life for the rest of the family went on—mostly without feeling all that different.  When I wrote about Devin’s up…

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One Thing At A Time

| by Shannon Williams

At the end of a long day of meetings, I stood at the stove crafting homemade Gouda Mac and Cheese with my laptop strategically placed on the island. In between stirring my butter, milk, and flour mixture I busily responded to emails.  With the mac and cheese prepped, I popped it …

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Permission to Fail in 2018

| by Shannon Williams

We are eleven days into 2018. At this point, the new year still holds promise. No matter what your 2017 was like, on January 11th most of us still believe this year will be better.  Michael Green, CEO of the  Social Progress Imperative says in a recent N…

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Lessons from a Leaf Blower

| by Shannon Williams

Decades ago I bought my husband a leaf blower as a birthday present. Now before you judge, I am not normally a person who gives practical items as gifts. At the time, the leaf blower was a luxury. We were early in our marriage and home ownership. Money was tight. I paid $30 for this fancy ga…

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